The evolution of telephones: 1878 to 1946

Telephones through the years

How many of ’em can you remember?

“Some of the old-timers must look pretty strange to you. But not to me… I made all of them.

“I started making telephone apparatus of all sorts in 1877, did such a good job that I was asked to join the Bell Telephone team way back in 1882.

“Telephone users get more and better service for their money in this country than anywhere else in the world. I’ve helped make this possibly by efficient manufacturing of uniform, high-quality equipment… by volume purchasing of all manner of supplies for the Bell Telephone Companies…by distributing to them, through my warehouses in 29 principal cities, the telephone equipment I make and the supplies I buy… by skillful installation of central office equipment.

“That is a huge job… especially now when the demand for telephone service is at an all-time peak.

“Remember my name… it’s Western Electric.”

>> Also see: How to dial a telephone (1952)

Phones from 1878 to 1946

Shown: Telephones from 1878, 1882, 1892, 1897, 1902, 1905, 1914, 1920, 1928 and 1946


Land comforts while at sea: Stories touting the Titanic's luxurious accommodations (1911)

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